US crafted Pakistan 'apology' to suit allies abroad

By REUTERS
July 11, 2012 11:02

 
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WASHINGTON, July 11 (Reuters) - In the end it was a meeting in a nondescript conference room in Chicago that finally set in motion the long-awaited US apology to Pakistan last week ending a seven-month impasse over NATO supply routes for the Afghan war.





The meeting in late May followed months of clamoring by Islamabad, images of flag-draped coffins on TV, and widespread outcry from Pakistanis incensed by the US air attack that killed 24 of their soldiers on the Afghan border last November.





The breakthrough, in which Islamabad reopened supply routes into Afghanistan and Washington yielded to months of Pakistani demands to apologize for the border deaths, was praised as a prelude to improved ties between two nations whose security alliance had lapsed into mutual suspicion and hostility.





After US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's discussions with Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari in the cavernous Chicago conference center where world leaders met for a NATO summit, Clinton instructed Thomas Nides, a top deputy back in Washington, to do what it took to find a solution ensuring NATO could once again supply the war in Afghanistan via Pakistan.


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